This week marks a special occasion in my life – it’s my rebirth week and I want to share a little of my story with you.
Why is the 22nd of November my rebirth day? On this date 15 years ago I took my last drug and my new life began.
My fall into addiction wasn’t overnight, it rarely is, it took a long time and a lot of practice and then it creeps up unexpectedly but the fall when it came was as rapid as it was brutal.
I never realised I was an addict until I tried to stop.
You see, I was an enlightened party soul, with a job, and responsibilities, not a drug addict.
During my teenage years in the late 80’s, early 90’s I discovered the joy of the acid house rave and the hallucinogens that went hand in hand with that scene and I had ball. We partied hard but it wasn’t long before I grew out of it, the college crowd I hung about in all went separate ways and we entered the world of jobs and responsibilities.
It should have ended there.
And it did for a while.
I spent a few years happily growing up, spreading my wings and discovering life and love and friendships.
But there was always something going on in the back of my mind. I always felt slightly disconnected from humanity and different, and looking back I think I’ve always felt a bit like that. I remember being a young child sitting with the pastor of my local youth group for hours quizzing him about God and Jesus and trying to work it out. I remember desperately wanting to be filled with the divine light of God, wishing I would fall over and speak in tongues and cry when I worshipped, but it never happened, I never quite got it.
So there I was in my early 20’s, I had friends and plenty of people to call on to hang out with but I still felt so very alone, trying to find something that made me feel like I belonged here and that’s when I met up with an old friend, who had previously gone in a different direction and he introduced me to his life. He was a DJ and had a large group of friends and we started going out to raves together.
I moved into the town they came from and into a house shared by about 8 others, sometimes more when we rented out under the stairs, and a new chapter started.
Go to work, come home, go to the pub.
Go to work, come home, go to the pub.
Go to work, come home on a Friday and party hard, all weekend, anywhere.
From squats to fields, empty warehouses, abandoned pubs to a chalk pit in Brighton, nowhere was off limits, if it could fit a sound system and a bunch of people looking for a good time we were there!
We were a solid crew. We would sit around for hours and hours discussing everything. Drinking mushroom tea and sharing our dreams of a better world and how we were going to create it.
We were creative and we were peaceful. We had a mission to change the world and make it a better place.
Finally I belonged.
These people got me.
These people shared my connection to the universe without question.
These people understood that life was more than the 3-dimensional world we lived in.
These people got my ideas, not only did they get them, they had them too! Halleluiah – I was home!
We had a ball!
We were the new age hippies creating a universal movement based on love and connection and energy.
We danced under the moonlight until the sun came up.
We worshipped life at the great stones of ancient times in Glastonbury and Avebury.
We were good people.
Those few years will hold a special place in my heart because I learnt so much but like any period of life it is transient. I moved away, I met a new crowd and continued partying.
Only this time my new crowd had a slightly sinister edge to them.
It wasn’t all peace love and hippiness. There were no enlightened conversations, it was pure hardcore partying. The love of the drugs and scene overshadowed any wisdom remaining.
My spiral began.
The next couple of years weren’t so clear.
Time and my recall of them is still a bit messy.
It was during this time I had my baby girl.
The partying slowed down but the drug consumption didn’t.
It wasn’t long until it was my daily medicine.
To the outside world, there was nothing amiss, I had a great job, a new car, I ran my home and took care of my daughter, we looked like the perfect little family starting out in life.
And in my head, there was no problem, I had a job for Gods sake, I wasn’t an addict!
Look at me, my house is clean, my cupboards are full and I don’t inject. Nope, no problem here!
Move along, nothing to see.
I moved on again in who I hung around with. This time they were serious.
The fall was quick and ugly.
My life was suddenly out of my control and there was craziness everywhere everyday.
Crime and violence became so common I was almost numb to it all.
I tried to maintain an outward identity, care for my daughter and give her as much laughter and happiness as I could.
But there was a piece of me that was screaming inside.
Inside I was on my knees.
Begging for a way out.
Longing for someone or something to come along and put it all back together again, to make it right.
I knew this wasn’t me.
I was an addict and I had lost control.
These few months of my life are the ones I wish I could erase.
I wish I could erase them and never think about them again.
The guilt and shame I carried for years has left scars so deep I’m still uncovering them.
But that light inside of me still shone. That tiny tenuous thread of hope still existed.
And one day I grabbed it.
I took hold of that thread of hope and clung on for dear life as I packed a backpack, took my daughter by her tiny, tender and trusting 4 year old hand and we got the fuck out of town!
That my friends, was my rebirth day.
The day I took my last drug and discovered what I had always been searching for existed in me, and around me, all along.
I began my awakening.
It was a long road and one I still travel, only now with a clear head and an open heart and mind.
That sense of belonging to something that I had always searched for was always there.
I believe in the beginning discovering others like me opened a gateway, only I took the elevator down first.
But if I hadn’t, I would never have found my way back to heights I live in today.
Everything for a reason.
We are given the power of the knowledge of the universe and self in manageable bite size pieces, learning one lesson before being faced with another. I couldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t been where I’d been then and for that I am grateful.
I believe, in my youthful naivety that I rushed it, I wasn’t ready, couldn’t handle and couldn’t process the knowledge I’d opened myself up to, so I sought to hide, from myself, my mind and the truth.
I wasn’t mentally equipped to deal with the knowledge that we existed in a universe that was so large and so mysterious we would never crack it and make logical sense of its energies.
I hadn’t evolved enough to trust that a force bigger than myself would lead me through.
I wanted answers.
I wanted to apply logic.
I wanted a clear map to life.
The journey of my life through the last 15 years has been a roller coaster of magical mystery. Love, light and laugher.
The inner work at times intense and overwhelming. But through every tear, every pain and every breakthrough I grow stronger.
I use my knowledge and my strength to help others.
At first, I carried a lot of shame and guilt around inside of me. My sense of self-worth was non-existent.
I spent a long long time feeling like I owed the world and paid regular penance. I trained as a counsellor and gave back to the community through voluntary work, helping other see past their pain and build a brighter future.
15 years on I’m a very different person and yes I’ve found my place at last. Right here, doing what I’m doing, living life and loving life and sharing my light. Making my tiny corner of the world a better place for everyone who’s in it.
Do I have regrets? Not anymore, I’ve made my peace with myself.
Shedding each layer as I unearth it. Letting people, possessions and beliefs go.
Occasionally that girl from 15 years ago comes out, other people never see her, but I do. And when she comes and my sense of self takes a knock, instead of letting it take over and make me feel like a nobody I use it as an opportunity to heal at an even deeper level.
Because I finally realise I am somebody.
What do I attribute to my recovery?
My will of steal.
My belief that there is something bigger than us guiding the way with purpose and beauty.
Gratitude for everything that I experience, good and bad (it’s only perspective that separate the two anyway) because I am here to experience it and to feel.
A sense of humour at the absurdity of life.
What have I learnt? That I know nothing, yet I know everything.
I will continue to grow and accept the lessons given to me.
I will continue to share my story, to inspire hope and show other people that it doesn’t matter where you come from, what you do or what decisions you have made HAPPY IS POSSIBLE!
My mission is bigger than my ego.
My message is clear.
The foundation to success: Confidence, self-awareness and self-love.
Work on understanding yourself, build your self-awareness to create a solid foundation of confidence and self-love from which anything is possible.
Originally published at www.kerrydavey.com